baking instructions: bake at 500 degrees in a 9×13 glass dish for 10 to 12 mins or until edges are crisp.
What You Need:
1 pack of active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
1 tablespoon of sugar
3 tablespoons of olive oil plus more for coating
3 3/4 cups of flour plus more for dusting
1 1/2 teaspoon of salt
1. Whisk together 1 1/3 cup of warm water (you don’t want the water hot, it will kill the yeast) and the sugar. Then mix in the yeast and allow to sit for 10 mins until mixture is a little foamy and bubbly. Once the ten minutes are up add the tablespoons of olive oil.
2. In another large bowl mix together the flour and salt. Creat a well in the middle and add the water and yeast mixture. Knead dough for a minimum of 5 minutes adding more flour if necessary until dough is smooth and stretchy.
3. Divide dough in half creating 2 dough balls. Brush each dough ball with olive oil, placing each piece of dough in a bowl covered with plastic wrap. Allow to rise for an hour and a half.
4. Once dough is done rising freeze one and prepare the other. Rub olive oil all over a 9 x 13 glass dish. Arrange your dough in the glass dish leaving some space in the corners to spread. Add your sauce, seasonings, and toppings.
5. Bake at 500 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes or until nice and crispy on the edges. Remove pizza from glass dish and place on a charcuterie cutting board and serve while hot.
When I read that I should be cleaning the inside of my fridge every 3 to 4 months my response was oops…..
It had definitely been awhile since our fridge had a good cleaning. And honestly the only reason it got cleaned recently was because my husband asked me to do it.
Being the good wife that I am (haha) I went ahead and did it for him.
It was disgusting.
When I actually pulled out the drawers I was embarrassed and thankful no one was here to witness the grossness of our fridge. Is grossness a word? Anyways it was gross.
But here is our fridge now. Clean, sanitized, and organized. Isn’t it lovely!
Nothing expired, nothing sticky on any surfaces, and everything is pretty much visible to prevent anything going to waste.
Hopefully this blog inspires or motivates you to clean out your fridge too.
Happy cleaning! Read below friends!
You Should Be Cleaning Your Fridge Every 3 months – 5 Tips To Get You Started
Make The Time
The fridge gets put off from cleaning because it doesn’t feel like much of a priority. That’s okay to admit that. Other things feel way more important then cleaning your fridge. However this is also the home to your food that you put into your body.
Make the time. It really won’t take you too long to clean, unless it’s been awhile. And if you’re scared or dreading to really deep clean your fridge then that’s a sign that you really need to clean it. Skip the Netflix or social media for a little bit to get this done.
2. Make Everything As Visible As You Can
If you can rearrange your fridge to where just about everything is visible less things will go to waste in your fridge. Everything in your fridge will be taken advantage of and no more throwing things away because it was forgotten.
3. If You’re Going To Clean it, Then Clean It
Not only do you need to make the time but you need to take out those drawers and take it on full throttle. Clorox wipes work great! Some of those drawers though may require a good scrub in the sink with some soap and water.
Either way, clean it and be proud of your work.
4. If You Have Kids Place Your Healthy Snacks At Arms Reach
Doing this simple thing will encourage your kids to go for the healthier options when they are hungry vs. wanting the junk food.
5. Don’t Overstock It
There’s no need to overstock. Unless maybe you have a party or a get together coming up. If you continuously overstock your fridge it may lead to you throwing more food out then it actually getting eaten. And if you’re throwing away food then you’re really throwing away money.
As you can see everything is pretty visible. It’s not overstocked and I have my healthy snacks for the kids at the bottom.
On the inside of the door I have my little coffee area with iced coffee and creamers/syrup. The next holder is condiments and the next is jarred stuff like pickles, olives, jellies, salsa, etc. And the last holder (that’s not pictured) held a box of chicken broth and carrots for our horse.
In this little drawer I keep the deli meat, cheese, butter, hotdogs, etc in here. I keep the cheese hidden because if my girls can see it that’s all they want…..ALL.DAY. lol
When my daughters are hungry and open the fridge this is all they can reach. They love sweets and chips but this is the only food I have accessible to them.
Because……. iced coffee. I just need to buy caramel and whipped cream and it will be the perfect area for my iced coffee needs.
So there you have it! We do have another fridge in our sun room and in that we only keep drinks. Water, soda, my boxed wine lol.
I hope you feel inspired or motivated to clean your fridge now!!!
Who wouldn’t mind a little extra money in their pocket?
Some of these tips take discipline and may be difficult at first to implement into your life. But I can assure once you get in these habits you’re going to wish you started a long time ago.
When I had my first daughter my husband and I decided that I would stay home. It was something that I really wanted to do and we knew if we made some sacrifices and be frugal with our spending we could make it happen.
I’m not saying it was easy cutting back, because it wasn’t.
Before I had kids I was making decent money working at the bank. Making my own money I never really thought twice about how I was spending it. It was my money and my thought process was, well I’ll make it up when I work tomorrow.
I use to get my hair colored, manicures and pedicures often, eat out A LOT, go shopping and buy whatever was appealing pretty much. Money wasn’t too much of an issue because I was working.
However being on one income has forced me to get creative and cut back on my spending lifestyle. However I think to myself all the timejeez, if I could have installed these habits while I was actually working I’d have so much money now!
But it is what it is, you live and learn.
Anyways folks, these tips below are what have personally helped me and my family live on one income. We have 3 kids, take family trips often and own more then when we had 2 incomes.It’s been an adjustment but totally worth it!
25 Money Saving Tips You Can Start Now-Whether It Be Getting Out Of Debt Or Saving For More Experience’s
1. Cut Your Own Hair (there are plenty of YouTube videos on how-to)
If you’re like me, and typically only get a trim when getting a haircut then this can be a super easy money saver. As much as I love the treatment of having my hair washed and blow dried while I just sit there, it can be expensive. I have cut my hair, added layers, and gave myself bangs all through watching how-to videos on youtube. If you’re thinking of going from long hair to short, well then, I would suggest a professional. When you begin cutting your own hair getting your hair done by an actual professional can feel like a real treat and more deserving.
2. Pre-plan Your Meals
When you begin pre-planning your meals you only begin buying what you actually need to make those particular meals. Look through your fridge and pantry and ask, “What can I make with this?” If you can get in the habit of doing this there will be no more things sitting in your fridge or pantry going bad or becoming expired.
3. Wait Till Movies Come Out On Redbox/Netflix/etc. VS. Watching Them At The Theater
If you go to the movies often this can really add up. With the tickets, snacks, and popcorn, it’s very easy to spend more then 20 bucks every time. Especially if you enjoy the theaters with the reclining chairs. Save going to the movies for special occasions or for movies that you really really want to see. Most of the time you can wait and you can put that money towards something else.
4. Embrace Your Natural Hair Color Instead Of Coloring It
How often do you color your hair? Color can be very expensive. I think most of the times I have colored my hair it has always been 80 dollars or more. But since I’m saving money I have embraced my natural hair color and my hair hasn’t been colored in almost 2 years (around that time anyway) If you just love color then I would suggest going with highlights vs. a solid color. That way when it does begin growing out it looks a little more natural and won’t need as much retouching.
5. Do Work Outs At Home Instead Of Paying A Gym Membership
Typically gym memberships are 20 dollars a month or more. From what I can remember anyway. I use to love having a gym membership but when you’re saving money a gym membership is more of a luxury than a necessity. There are some great at home work outs all over the web. You may need to get a little creative but you’ll soon learn you don’t need the membership to stay fit and strong.
(YouTube has great work outs you can do in your home. I personally love ‘bohobeautiful’. Her videos are yoga related.)
6. Cancel your cable (with smart TVs now and Netflix who really needs cable?)
My husband and I had cable for years. We always had the cheap package but we still had cable. We are so busy doing other things that we hardly watch any TV. The only people that really watch TV are the kids but when they do watch TV its something they enjoy on Netflix or youtube. SO, we went ahead and canceled it. We figured if we wanted it back we will just call and get it back. It’s been a few months now and still no eagerness to get cable back. If anything it has given us more time back to do more things that we enjoy.
7. Shop The Clearance Racks Or Try Thrift Stores
Whenever you need something always check the clearance section first. Have you ever bought something and then in two weeks you see it in clearance? The worst right! Check clearance, or wait for sales. I personally am going to begin checking out thrift stores. When I was younger my mom and I absolutely loved thrift store shopping. And now, I hardly ever go. If you have the time you really can find some amazing treasures that would definitely be more expensive elsewhere.
8. Try The Generic Brands, You May Be Surprised
Not all generic brands are great, however you may come to find you enjoy the generic brand or style better. It’s typically a good chunk cheaper and works just as good.
9. Eat out less
Going back to tip number 2, pre-planning meals can definitely help with eating out less. I personally love love love eating out! So if you catch me eating out its because I am treating myself. But if you’re buying your lunch everyday or going out for dinner or drinks with co-workers every other night a lot of money is going to waste. If you’re a person who feels they do this I challenge you to add up your receipts, the number may be shocking.
10. Avoid Buying Expensive Clothing Or Accessories
Particularly name brand. We all know how expensive name brand clothing or accessories can be. So much sometimes it’s absolutely ridiculous. My mom, bless her heart absolutely loves Michael Kors. One time it was my mom, my husband, and myself and for whatever reason I asked her how many brand name purses she had. I was expecting like 5 the most. She said maybe 20 (which we know she has more then 20) my husband and I looked at each other in shock. We began discussing how else all that money could be used. A purse here, a watch there, 2 or 3 pairs of heels there….it adds up. I personally rather put that money on a vacation. If there’s something you really want, save it for a birthday or maybe an anniversary.
(some clothing and accessories are very pricey, how else could you be using that money?)
11. Review Your Bills And Create A Budget
Sometimes you look at your bank account(s) and you ask yourself, where the heck is my money going. Take the time to figure it out. Identify the problem and concur it. A big issue that most of us face is we spend more money then we have coming in. Learn to live within your means and be happy with it.
12. Review Any Monthly Subscriptions (do you really need those magazine subscriptions?)
There are monthly subscription’s for just about everything it seems. Take the time to review what you are paying and how often you really use it. What I’ve seen lately all over social media are subscription boxes. You pay a monthly fee and you get a box of goodies of whatever you signed up for. They have make-up boxes, dog boxes, book boxes, etc. You name it, I guarantee there’s a box for it.
However, do you really need it?
13. Create A Limit With Holiday Spending (especially with gift buying)
Many of us go into debt when the holidays come around. We charge it on a credit card then spend the new year paying it off. Your kids probably don’t need all those toys and is that what so and so really wants. Create a budget with your holiday spending and find out what people want or need so you don’t end up overspending or wasting your money on something that could be cared less for. Also, stick to the budget. I will say it again, stick to the budget.
14. Figure Out If You Can Consolidate Your Debt- Work with a Financial Advisor
If you have a lot of debt it doesn’t hurt to speak with an advisor or banker. A debt consolidation or refinance could save you more then you think. Just make sure whoever you are working with you really trust. You don’t want to end up with even more debt.
15. Do It Yourself Projects Are Big For A Reason (most of the time you can DIY and it’s cheaper)
We hire people for this and that when in reality, you could probably do it yourself. OR, we see things online or in the store and it can easily be made.
You can make the quality better and will save you money! The benefit of doing things or making things yourself is you end up appreciating it a lot more and saves you money.
16. Make Things Visible-get organized
So many things we forget about because we can’t see it. It becomes expired or we completely forgot it even existed and we’ve bought multiples. Take the time to go through your things and make it noticeable so you don’t catch yourself buying something that you already have, you just probably forgot about it.
17. For Everything That You Buy Ask Yourself, “is this a necessity or a want?” (Be strong)
I love retail therapy just like the next person, but truth be told most of the things we buy we don’t actually need. For everything you buy I challenge you to ask this question and most of time you will find it’s a want not a need. And if it is a want, you could be saving that money and using it elsewhere.
18. Make Meals At Home And EAT THE LEFTOVERS
This is somewhat related to tip number 2. It’s not enough to just pre-plan your meals you have to actually stick to it and make it. And eat those leftovers! Honestly, I’m not the biggest fan of leftovers. However if that food ends up in the trash then I just threw away money. So in this house we eat leftovers.
19. Give Yourself Manicures And Pedicures
If you’re getting your nails done every two weeks then those little pennies are adding up. I love getting my nails done. But it’s now become a reward to myself or something I enjoy doing before going on a trip. Doing your nails yourself is rather simple, you just need to make the time to do it yourself.
20. Tweeze your Brows Yourself
Another thing I use to do back in the day every two weeks was getting my brows done. If I wasn’t getting them waxed I was getting them threaded. But once I became a stay at home mom I decided to not do it anymore. So not doing that one thing for the past 3 years has saved us $1,080. Holy crap! That’s the first time I’ve done the math on that.
Since then, I’ve grown them out more and just tweeze now. I stick with my natural shape and let them be.
21. Save Your Gift Cards
I’ll be honest I have re-gifted gift cards. That, or I have used gift cards to buy other gifts for parties or whatnot. It’s a very simple method to provide gifts to others without touching money from your bank account. I don’t do this all the time but I definitely have when I am saving money for whatever reason.
22. Brew Your Own Coffee (SO.MUCH.CHEAPER.)
If you’re spending 5 bucks on coffee 5 days of the week you’re spending about 25 dollars a week, which is 100 dollars a month on coffee. WHICH, is 1,200 dollars a year. You’ll spend less money buying a decent coffee maker and making it yourself.
(If the barista knows your name, you’re probably spending too much money there)
23. Rent Space In Your House (if you have an extra room, get a roommate.)
This may not work for everybody but if you have an extra living space consider getting a roommate or allow a family member to move it. Charge them monthly and put that money towards your mortgage, debt, into a savings, etc.
24. Be Cautious Of Little Expenses (a dollar here and there really adds up)
We’ve all been to Target or TJ Maxx and get in the trap of those little cute things that you had no intention on buying but now they are in your cart. They are seen at check out, once you walk into the store or maybe in the middle of an aisle. Those are traps. Eventhough sure it’s just a dollar, or two, or three….well, they begin to add up and if you are doing this every time you shop you’re spending more then you think on pointless things. Be aware and cautious.
25. DO YOUR BEST NOT TO STRESS
Money makes us stress. But do your best to not allow it to control you or even upset you. With these saving tips you will have more money in your pockets that you can splurge elsewhere (on trips for example) or you will be on the road to getting out of debt faster.
Hope these tips help! I’d love your feedback!
Are there any money savings tips that you can share?
What do you and your spouse do once the kids fall asleep?
Do you both get on your phones, or attend to solo activities that don’t involve each other? Be honest!
First of all, there is absolutely nothing wrong if you do those things. My husband and I spend many evenings like that. We each have our own things we want to do or catch up on.
However we both know that when the kids are down for the night that it’s also an opportunity to spend some time together. Might not be able to go on an actual date but we can definitely do an activity with one another.
I have a list of activities below that you and your spouse can do once the kids fall asleep. They are fairly quiet activities so both of you won’t have to worry about waking up your kids.
Quiet Activities To Do With Your Spouse Once The Kids Fall Asleep
1. Do A Puzzle Together
Honestly, when is the last time you’ve even done a puzzle? This is a great quiet activity with many benefits for the both of you. Lowers stress levels, delays dementia, improves your memory, and that’s just a few! There are so many “puzzle levels” out there, so have fun picking one out together and accomplishing it together.
2. Watch A Movie Or A Documentary
Netflix, amazon prime, red-box. Movies are so accessible these days. And there are a lot of great ones out there! A great opportunity to snuggle with your honey like old times. While cuddling you two will be increasing your oxytocin levels, which, makes you both feel calm and at ease. I knew I loved cuddling for a reason.
4. Give Each Other Massages
Light some candles and bring out the essentials oils. Another great stress reliever. We could all use less stress right?
Go full body. If you’ve never had your butt massaged you’re missing out my friend.
5. Do Self Portraits of One Another
We’ve all seen Titanic right? Where Jack does a self portrait of Rose and she’s naked. I’m not saying you need to be naked but definitely have fun with this one. Make it a competition and have your friends pick the best one!
warning: you both may begin to laugh uncontrollably.
6. Read Together
Whether it be magazines or a novel this is a great time to stimulate your brain and then have an open discussion about what you’re reading.
7. Give Each Other A Foot Rub
Currently getting a foot rub now as I write this haha. Have I mentioned how much I love my husband.
This is such a great thing to do for one another. It’s relaxing, feels good, and gets the blood flowing!
8. Go Outside And Stargaze
This obviously depends on the weather. But if the weather is nice pull out the lawn chairs and just enjoy the stars. Let the deep convos begin. What is life?
9. Cook Or Bake Something Together
The possibilities are endless! Don’t make it too complicated of course. You could make cookies, prepare some overnight French toast for breakfast (yummm), get messy with rice krispy treats, make some French bread pizzas, etc!
10. Slow dance
I’m such a sucker for the lovey dovey stuff. Turn the music on low, dim the lights, and just dance. Something so simple yet so intimate. Dance to your wedding song and get lost in the moment.
Have you heard the song Heaven by Kane Brown? Oh my goodness, you’ll cry.
11. Do Yoga Together
Yoga is a great way to wind down and enter a relaxing state of mind. You two can get even more creative with couple yoga poses. If you two end up laughing hysterically because these couple poses are winning, I say embrace it.
12. Do Facials Together
Try a DIY facial or get some sheet masks from the store. Definitely take a picture. Who doesn’t love a refreshing face to kiss later!
13. Play Cards Or A Board Game Together, Like Scrabble
Bring on the nostalgia. Let the inner child be exposed and start reminiscing with one another. A great time to learn even more about each other and how you want to raise your children.
14. Make Ice Cream Sundaes Together
Go all out and do full on ice cream Sundaes! I’m talking hot fudge, nuts, cherries on top, whip cream, the works! Or make up your own type of Sundae together! This is teamwork if you ask me.
Or, just have ice cream cones like this couple pictured above, they look like they are having fun.
15. Plan A Vacation
Make some coffee or tea and take a moment to dream together. Plan a trip and write down some goals you two would like to accomplish. You two are more likely to accomplish those goals when you write them down. Once you’re done writing your goals place them in an area where you two can see them often.
16. Take A Bubble Bath Together
Dim the lights, light some candles for a very relaxing and intimate time. Pop open a bottle of bubbly or open a bottle of wine. Relax.
Remember the scene in Pretty Woman? You two can recreate that. If this leads to something else, don’t look at me!
17. Have A Staring Contest
Believe it or not looking into each other’s eyes is a very intimate thing. Fall in love with each other all over again with this fun activity.
Tell each other why you love one another. Sounds cheesy, but you’ll never forget the sweet things he ends up telling you.
There ya have it! A few quiet activities you can enjoy with your spouse once the kiddos are sleeping tight!
Any quiet activities you would like to share? I’d love to hear it!
As always, thank you for reading and I hope you can have fun and become closer to your spouse with a few of these!
When I originally wrote this blog I focused on toddlers. However this still applies to kids in grad school!
Okay, let’s be real for a second. It really isn’t that hard to entertain a toddler. You give them an empty box and it’s the best thing ever. If you’re really feeling spontaneous give them a role of toilet paper and let them go crazy, they’ll get some giggles from that, seriously lol.
My point is, if you do a search for activities for toddlers you get a list of crazy sensory activities. It honestly overwhelms me. I know without doubt my toddler would absolutely love to do those activities. However, I personally just don’t have the patience to do all of it. I would have to go buy supplies, which means I would have to go to the store, and then come home and….yeah you get my point.
Call me lazy, but I prefer simplicity. With it being so hot this summer I need simple activities.
Look at her! Balloons and water! SIMPLE.
Below I have put together a simple list to do this summer with your toddler broken, into 3 categories.
Things To Do Outside
Things To Do Inside
Things To Do When You Have The Time, Money, Or Energy
sidenote: Mama, don’t feel you need to constantly entertain your toddler. Allow them to be bored and learn to entertain themselves. Letting them learn to entertain themselves enhances their imagination and creativity.
And some days, they will just want to watch movies or youtube ALL DAY. Let them. We all like to have lounge days sometimes, even toddlers.
THINGS TO DO OUTSIDE
Do a search in your community. Typically they are free to the public and a great way for your toddler to get wet and wild. Bonus is they will take a long nap afterwards!
2. During The Weekend Find A FREE CONCERT
You’d be surprised how many places have free concerts. Check events on social media and ask around. There’s a lake near where we live and they host summer evening concerts. Families come, bring snacks or pizza, and let their kids observe and dance!
3. “Paint The Garage”
Get a bucket of water, and some paintbrushes. Let your toddler dip the paintbrushes in the water and fling or “paint” your garage. They can see the water strokes and they really think they are painting. Harmless, clean, easy fun! Fun with sponges too!
4. Bubble FUN
I think we forget sometimes how much toddlers love bubbles. Make it a game and encourage them to pop the bubbles as fast as they can. You can find a cheap bubble maker at Walmart for like 9 bucks.
5. Go Fishing
Toddlers love new things and trying new things. We bought our girls fishing poles before a camping trip we went on. Before we actually took them real fishing my husband let them play with their poles. They spent a good hour just casting the string out and reeling it back in, in the front yard. So if there’s not a lake near you, let them pretend!
6. Play With Chalk
You can get so creative with chalk! It’s especially fun with you wet the chalk first and then start chalking the side walk. A fun way to explore tons of colors too!
7. Invest In A Water Activity Table
For my girls 3rd birthday we got them a water activity table from amazon that came with a few water toys. They can splash the water, pour cups, put their toys in, and it’s just a fun activity that doesn’t make a huge mess. The water dries and when you’re done, pour the water out. Perfect for those hot days when you want to get outside.
8. Get a Plastic OR Blow Up Pool
Perfect for those days when you don’t want to leave the house but you want your toddler to burn some energy. Sometimes a kiddy pool is more fun then an actual pool because you’re in the comfort of your own home.
9. Let Them Play With The Water Hose
Because this is just a classic summer activity. My toddlers have an absolute blast with the water hose. My husband gets a little mad because they make a mess getting water over everything lol, but they have so much fun with something so incredibly simple.
THINGS TO DO INSIDE
Build A Fort
Take the cushions of the couch, bring out the blankets and pillows, get the mattress off the bed! You can get extremely creative with this and it’s an easy clean up!
There was a time where I took our mattress and had half of the mattress on the floor and half of it on the actual bed. It became a slide for my girls and they had SO MUCH FUN climbing on the bed and sliding down the mattress. That is pure, cheap, entertainment.This kept them occupied for quite some time let me tell you.
2. Turn Some Music On, AND DANCE
Who cares if you don’t dance well, your toddler isn’t going to judge you. Your toddler will love dancing with you. Bonus- you’re also working out. #momwin
3. Do A CRAFT
Don’t make this too complicated. Let them create art with finger paint or let them make a macaroni necklace. Keep it simple mama.
4. Make Rice Krispy Treats
They will love you forever first of all, and this is something really fun they can help with.
5. GET YOUR TODDLER A WATER DOODLE MAT
Just trust me on this. It’s the best ever. You can buy these mats on amazon. Check out the reviews!
6. READ BOOKS
Need I say more. Buy some puppets and have them read. Become extremely animated as you read them a story. A great way for your toddler to learn and for you to bond together.
THINGS TO DO WHEN YOU HAVE THE TIME, MONEY, OR ENERGY
Go To The Movies
Visit a Museum
Take Them To a Trampoline Park or Some type of Kid Zone
Take Advantage of “toddler time” at specific places
Visit the library Or A Barnes And Noble
Wishing you a cool summer! xoxo
What will you be doing this summer with your toddler! Drop it in the comments!